The establishment of the effectiveness of a training and development program involves evaluating the results using performance measures. An evaluation may vary from one organization to the other but there are those factors that are often assessed. These include the reaction; the learning; behavior; and effectiveness. These are known as Kirkpatrick levels of evaluation and they can help the manager to determine the effectiveness of the training and development exercise. Reaction This involves scrutinizing the learner’s reaction (McNamara, 2008). The manager has to ask the question, ‘how does the learner feel about this initiative?
If the employees accept the training or are willing to undertake it, the manager can be assured that it will definitely play a big role in the in the transformation of the workforce and the company as a whole. If it is not accepted, even its usefulness ceases to exist because the results are more likely to be negative. Learning This is a question of whether the employees gained any knowledge, facts and new skills during the training (McNamara, 2008). This can be done through the conduction of an evaluation test to be taken by those who participated in the training.
Questionnaires are normally used and positive reports could be an indication of success of a training or development program. Managers should beware of employees who are likely to give dishonest answers to avoid reprimands. To take care of this, questionnaires should not be labeled with the owner’s name. Behavior This is the practical bit of it and it involves scrutinizing what new information that the learner claims to have learnt is being utilized (McNamara, 2008). Employees who have benefited from the training should be enthusiastic to try the new methods and skills.
If the management notes that these employees are opting to stick to older ways of doing things or are finding the new skills difficult to implement, the training and development cannot be said to be successful. Effectiveness Checking effectiveness is the process of checking the results (McNamara, 2008). What are the benefits of the new skills and knowledge acquired? Do they develop the company and the employees? These should be the questions to be answered at this juncture. Checking effectiveness establishes whether the desired results were achieved or not.
It is actually the most important part of the evaluation as it is the most desired result from the process of training and development. Key performance measures are used to assess effectiveness. These include more output, higher employee rating, employee satisfaction among others. This stage acts as the basis of future training and development since the weak points in the completed assessment can be used to make the next session more successful. This is also the most difficult level to achieve which is why employee interest should be evaluated from the beginning to avoid wastage of time.
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